Thomas McGreevy

Excellence

Posted by in Uncategorized

Democracies were surprised lately when they found that Russia had got ahead of them in science. What a delicious specimen of human blindness! If the whole tendency of their society is opposed to every sort of excellence, why did they expect their scientists to excel? – C.S. Lewis (Screwtape Proposes a Toast) At bottom there is only one question we must answer with our lives. The universe will have our answer one way or another. The question is, “what do you want?” It does not require a specific answer. At…read more

6

The Way Is Hidden

Posted by in Uncategorized

This is a painting done in 1964 by Belgian artist René Magritte. He said about the painting; “Everything we see hides another thing, we always want to see what is hidden by what we see. There is an interest in that which is hidden and which the visible does not show us. This interest can take the form of a quite intense feeling, a sort of conflict, one might say, between the visible that is hidden and the visible that is present.” Do you feel that conflict? It’s almost annoying…read more

4

The Future

Posted by in Uncategorized

Our future is something we discover. We don’t make it, though we would like to. If we had the option, that is what we would do, but it is already made. Alas, we were hoping for something small and familiar. Strange is a thing that was formerly familiar, removed by the passage of time, and encountered again… an estranged acquaintance, a dwelling from a former life, a childhood toy… our memory fails without the real thing present to constantly correct it. When we do encounter the thing many years later, the…read more

2

The Way That You Should Go

Posted by in Uncategorized

We spent some time with good friends last night and, as often happens when parents of young children gather, our conversation turned to the topic of our kids. We talked about their future.  We talked about their education. We wondered about how to lead them so they go on to live lives of significance and deep meaning. There is a famous proverb that says, “Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it”. The most common interpretation of…read more

6

Adventure

Posted by in Uncategorized

We talk a lot about facing our fears and pressing on in the face of great resistance. We talk a lot about how to endure difficulty and hardship. There is no denying the difficulty. It’s there.  It’s all true, but I don’t think we have the right narrative. The tragic hero slugging his/her way to some remote imagined destination doesn’t quite capture the lives we were created to live. There is something larger unfolding and it is not yet clear where the road will lead us. We sense that down…read more

2

Craftsmen

Posted by in Uncategorized

“I believe that in all men’s lives at certain periods, and in many men’s lives at all periods between infancy and extreme old age, one of the most dominant elements is the desire to be inside the local Ring and the terror of being left outside.” C.S. Lewis (The Inner Ring) Oh, the lure of the esoteric. What we wouldn’t give to be an insider… to be included… to be counted among the few at the center of it all. …and the horror of exclusion, what great lengths we go…read more

0

Fear

Posted by in Uncategorized

“Your enemy wants you to be in the maximum uncertainty, so that your mind will be filled with contradictory pictures of the future, every one of which arouses hope or fear. There is nothing like suspense and anxiety for barricading a human’s mind against God. God wants men to be concerned with what they do; the enemy’s business is to keep them thinking about what will happen to them.”  C.S. Lewis – The Screwtape Letters (adjusted to address the reader directly) What is that feeling of foreboding that creeps in…read more

0

This Is Where We Used to Live

Posted by in Uncategorized

Recently, I decided to go out of my way and drive through the neighborhood where I grew up. I wasn’t expecting this, but it turned out to be an emotional experience. It was worth doing, but you have to be ready for it. The house where I grew up looked to be half the size of what I remembered. The trees had grown old and changed the look of the lot where our little house stood. There is a pine tree in the front yard that my Dad used to jump…read more

2

Boldness

Posted by in Uncategorized

  “the best lack all conviction, while the worst are full of passionate intensity.” – William Butler Yeats (1865-1939)   There have been many times throughout history when one could witness the same conditions that Yeats’ observed. Such times are to blame for a most disquieting misjudgment, that a lack of conviction is a distinction of the best, and passionate intensity that of the worst. If you think that by curbing your passionate intensity you are claiming your place among the righteous you are sorely mistaken. If we are not careful the wicked…read more

0

Love With Abandon

Posted by in Uncategorized

“If human love does not carry a man beyond himself, it is not love. If love is always discreet, always wise, always sensible and calculating, never carried beyond itself, it is not love at all.” Oswald Chambers   Most acts of love are carried out with one eye on the self. Great pains are taken to ensure that such acts are not misinterpreted. The risks to ones dignity are well known and carefully managed. To survive, one must make sure that he is not carried beyond himself where he may…read more

0